Setting up a New Community Council

A step by step guide

Community Councils setting up

Outwith the Quadrennial Elections period, the process of forming a community council in an area that does not have one begins by a local person asking for a petition.

Download a pdf icon petition form [14kb].

Once the petition is signed by twenty local people who are on the electoral register, it can be submitted to North Lanarkshire Council, requesting that a community council is established in the named area.

Those signing the petition are not committing themselves to become community councillors. However, petitioners are committing themselves to form a steering committee to draw up a constitution to govern the affairs of the proposed community council. This part of the process may take several meetings to successfully draw a set of rules to govern the community council's activities.

The Scottish Government, COSLA and the Association of Scottish Community Councils were all involved in developing and agreeing:

Once a draft constitution is in place, it is adopted at a public meeting. The steering committee is then dissolved, having fulfilled its purpose. North Lanarkshire Council will then handle the election phase, issuing a call for nominations, and making arrangements to hold an election meeting.

Here is a step by step guide to the process involved in forming a community council.

1. Request for a petition by a local resident.

2. Completed petition (signed by 20 local people who are on the electoral register) is returned to North Lanarkshire Council

3. North Lanarkshire Council will advertise to seek nominations for the establishment of     the Community Council.                

4. Inaugural meeting

  • Provide funds for operation of steering committee;
  • Consider constitution;
  • Elect interim office bearers for the period of the steering committee's operation.
  • Agree subsequent steering committee meeting(s); and
  • Agree constitution (if required).

5. Public Meeting

  • Hold an advertised meeting to formally adopt constitution;
  • Submit agreed constitution to North Lanarkshire Council for approval;
  • North Lanarkshire Council will set a date for election meeting; and
  • Agree and set arrangements for nominations.

6. Election arrangements.  North Lanarkshire Council will:

  • arrange the issue of nomination forms;
  • arrange posters for nominations;
  • appoint a council officer to act as returning officer; and
  • arrange the publicity process.

7. Election Meeting

  • If the nominations exceed the number of places available, the election will be contested by ballot and
  • The election's results will be declared.

8. Initial meeting of new community council, organised by North Lanarkshire Council

  • Office bearers will be  elected;
  • A copy of the constitution will be available to all members;
  • Standing orders will be approved;
  • The dates of future meetings will be set; and
  • Consider any need for sub committees.

Please use the 'contact us' box if you have any questions. For more information, see 'related pages', 'downloads' or 'other useful websites'.

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